Streamline your SMB procurement process with these top procurement software applications.

The procurement process management is complex as it involves purchases, inventory, orders, invoices, vendors, payments, and more. But at the same time, it is vital for company success. That’s why businesses need to automate and manage this process with applications.

If you wait till the last moment to deploy procurement software in your company, there will be consequences of manual processing. Hence, it is wise to start implementing these tools as soon as you notice the friction of inefficient manual processes. 

Let’s dive deep into the basics of procurement software and learn about the best tools in this domain.

What Is Procurement Software?

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Procurement means finding and acquiring the goods and services a business needs. Hence, procurement software refers to a business solution that automates different phases of the procurement process. 

Whether it is about analyzing expenses, managing contracts, or making payments, such tools can help you have total control over each process operation. These can also integrate with various ERP platforms to make the process smoother. 

Furthermore, some tools also allow all employees to access and execute tasks from a central unit with pepper user permission. 

What Do These Tools Do?

A procurement software application can do several tasks to make the procurement process effortless for your team. Employees can order purchases from anywhere and communicate with team members. Here are the top tasks this software can perform:

  • Generate a purchase order and verify it
  • Automate e-purchase-order transmission
  • Remind you of recent purchase orders and cancellations
  • Send pending purchase orders to appropriate personnel for further action
  • Perform financial and inventory transactions after order arrival
  • Avoid spot shortages by maintaining an inventory
  • Collect data and analyze trends for maximum profitability
  • Streamline the standardization process across different platforms

Now, let’s discuss when you use procurement software tools.

Who Uses Procurement Software?

You would need procurement software when you buy raw materials, computer hardware, office supplies, etc., in bulk quantities throughout the year. Hence, any business that frequently purchases supplies from third-party vendors and wants to make the procurement system transparent.

You will mostly find the following businesses using procurement tools: 

  • Consumer goods and appliances manufacturers
  • Vehicle manufacturers
  • eCommerce and retail businesses

But, there is a specialized business that also uses this software, and that is procurement consultants or agencies.

Most brands outsource their procurement operations to these agencies for convenience and affordability. Businesses like Capgemini, Bain & Company, GEP Worldwide, Accenture, etc., are the leaders in procurement consultancy.     

How Does Procurement Software Help Businesses?

#1. Procurement Automation

Business process automation is evident in every domain, including procurement. You can successfully automate the whole procurement operation by using procurement software.

From vendor discovery to registration, product selection to quality check, and finally, deal signing, everything comes under one software.

In most cases, the tool automatically processes internal supply buying requests. It just needs a manager’s approval before sending the buy order.    

#2. Transparency in Buying

The business stakeholders like managers and CFOs can look at the buying trends from a central software. No need to jump through hoops to get reports on procurements. 

Also, the tool tracks every step until the deal finalizes, ensuring high-level corporate transparency to avoid corruption.  

#3. Approval Optimization

Such tools come with intelligent algorithms to separate genuine buy orders from wastage. Hence, the approval managers only get buying requests that are genuine most of the time. Subsequently, managers can quickly approve buy orders. 

#4. Visibility to Spending

The tool dashboard instantly shows you the overall company spending on supplies purchasing, who your vendors are, how much you are paying them, and so on. It helps you to budget projects, save on unnecessary buying, etc.  

Features to Look for While Choosing Procurement Software

Most procurement tools offer a standard set of functionalities. However, before buying one, ensure that they at least provide the following features:

  • The tool should come with a supplier management dashboard where you can onboard new vendors or review contracts with existing ones.
  • It will be convenient if the software also offers a vendor discovery function.
  • There must be a risk management utility that will block unnecessary spending or wrongful buy orders.
  • Your procurement tool must come with an audit functionality so that you can audit purchase orders, vendor payments, etc.
  • The best procurement tool will also offer a budgeting functionality where you can enter a monthly or quarterly budget and keep purchases within that figure. 
  • There should also be a communication functionality that will notify the software user of new buy orders, invoices, due orders, etc. 
  • It is good if the app offers a mobile version for spend tracking, order approvals, deal finalization, and more. 
  • Reliable procurement software should allow you to set corporate policy on purchasing.
  • Finally, the tool must allow the procurement reps to create custom procurement workflows if the software lacks templates for certain purchasing scenarios.  

Now that you know about this tool’s concept and the tasks it can perform, look at the best procurement software applications SMBs can use.

Precoro

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If you belong to a small or medium team, Precoro can help you through purchase process streamlining and manual work elimination. It saves you valuable time and money and allows you to focus on more pressing matters.

This innovative and blazing-fast software can optimize the procure-to-pay system of your organization for better work efficiency. It efficiently handles the tasks involved in the purchasing process, such as requisition, ordering, and billing. 

Moreover, Precoro improves your purchasing system by improving your approval workflow. Workflow stages such as request process, purchase orders, approval, billing, and invoice management can be done electronically with this tool.

The application also makes the process control, approval, and expense analysis on the go a lot easier. 

Using this reliable solution, companies can have regular reports and data analysis. The detailed and comprehensive reports cover all flowchart processes and procurement data.

Besides, these reports allow you to track and resolve errors, customize the report formats for stakeholders, and real-time export data for accounting and financial analysis.

Kissflow

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Do you want to have control over the procure-to-pay process but with sufficient flexibility? Kissflow lets you have that with its simple and customizable solution. For purchase requisitions, it offers fluid forms so that you can collect, approve and track the purchase requests. 

Once a request is approved, it automatically generates orders and issues POs. For vendor management, this tool offers an efficient portal for onboarding, managing, and maintaining vendors. 

As you use this application, approving invoices on the go becomes possible. It also supports automated three-way matching, checking invoices with contracts, purchase orders, and service entry sheets.

Kissflow can also generate data-driven and actionable insights on purchasing trends, expenditures, and vendor performance. Using this software, users can also generate instant reports that include customizable parameters.

It also supports seamless integration with various third-party tools. Get rid of any redundancy by using it with various ERP and finance applications, including Microsoft Dynamics, Quickbooks, Xero, SAP, and NetSuite. This solution also lets you use powerful plugins and APIs.

Team Procure

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As an SMB, it is time for you to simplify the procurement process with Team Procure. However, this software can also cater to the needs of enterprises that deal with complex procurement operations on an international level.

This single cloud-based platform can handle all your approvals, purchase orders, and inventory. When it comes to purchasing requests, the solution can sort these according to budget, department, and severity. From these requests, users can also generate POs and monitor delivery schedules.

Team Procure also offers a pricing matrix feature, using which companies can manage the bids made by multiple suppliers purchased from the lowest bidder. Since different organizations have varying needs, it allows organizations to create custom approval workflows.

Here, onboarding the suppliers and vendors are easy. Also, it has built-in KPIs for performance tracking. Even if you have warehouses in multiple locations, this tool helps you to have an integrated warehouse management system. You can even integrate its service into your existing system through personalized API.

ProcurementExpress

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ProcurementExpress is an ideal procurement software that can streamline all the related workflows. It also helps you eliminate lengthy manual processes, paper trails, and possible incidents of fraud. 

Its innovative approval system lets you set maximum expenses and determine approval chains. Companies can also assign predetermined approval levels to different employees. In addition, organizations can customize and automate all steps of an approval chain for optimized efficiency.

The application allows you to create fast and accurate POs based on your relationship with individual vendors. You can include necessary fields and drop-down menus to create professional and contextual POs.

According to your company’s financial structure, you can allocate costs to different locations to avoid overspending. Using the in-app reporting feature, users can also analyze the comprehensive breakdowns of the expenses. Moreover, the solution can create budgets for different projects and departments.

Procurify

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Say goodbye to paper processes, slow approval, and complex solutions with Procurify. This proactive spend management software offers complete visibility and control over company expenses.

As you use this tool, it becomes possible to approve all purchase orders from one place. Here, you can also view real-time spending against the budgets. It also offers physical and virtual spending cards for seamless spending. 

Procurify also supports creating a workflow for automating and tracking every purchase journey step. You can also set purchasing permission based on department and location. The ability to sort all orders for a vendor is another highlighted feature of this tool. 

The app can perform vendor performance analysis so that you can make informed purchasing and business decisions. Here, you can import catalog items and details, including images.

This solution integrates directly with your favorite business applications such as Amazon Business, Oracle, Quickbooks, and Slack. 

Coupa

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Coupa is a platform that provides you with the visibility and expenditure control you need for managing the procurement process. Choosing this solution for your company means you can procure with the ease of consumer shopping while saving your employees valuable time.

The top features of this application are:

  • Simplification of purchase requisition and order processes
  • Real-time purchase order tracking
  • Alerts for discounted pricing and other benefits
  • Flexible forms to enter data for SOW-based services
  • Dashboard for real-time budget management

Besides, the tool supports approval through emails and mobile phones. Also, companies can use it for inventory and contract management.

Bellwether

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With Bellwether, you can make the procurement process transparent and quick. It helps you do away with verbal approvals and lengthy communication through emails and phone calls.

This software lets you set up requisitions, purchase orders, and invoices using minimum time and effort. Features like advanced workflow and budgeting ensure greater visibility and control over spending.

This cloud-based tool offers the necessary flexibility and customization for your needs. If your company needs multiple languages or custom fields, Bellwether can provide you with that. Moreover, it allows you to access the application off-site.

PairSoft

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PairSoft is a user-friendly software that businesses can use to automate the workflow across the P2P process. It is also helpful for gaining spending visibility and having a good relationship with the suppliers and vendors.

The software can be deployed quickly on your system or existing ERP and used with ease. It lets you manage POs by streamlining the whole process. You also get complete spending insights across categories.

PairSoft can also facilitate real-time communication between companies and suppliers. Invoice processing and validation are other task automation you can do with this software. It also supports analytics and reporting.

Final Words

In this era of digitization, it is challenging for companies to manage their procurement process without any software or automated solution. These tools can open several new opportunities at every stage of this process. 

Moreover, the applications ensure optimum efficiency even when you scale up your business. Check out the best procurement software list to select the most suitable for your needs. Also, you can look at the essential features a robust tool for automated procurement should have.

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